Q: What do you wish to do, superhero?
A: To save the planet.
Q: And how would you do that?
A: Using my super-skills!
A: Because I want to.
This fictional conversation summarises a superhero and could refer to Wonder Woman, Harry Potter or any other super-being. They all wish to save the planet with their super skills.
What about the real super-beings of our planet? I am talking about human beings, of course. As a species, we are powerful. We communicate at a fantastic speed, and we can fly too, not to mention the thousands of other things that we can do that other animals and plants cannot. Clearly we "can" do a lot.
But can we save the planet? Do we wish to? The answer seems to be no. Our actions speak for themselves. Take climate change, for example. Consider related issues such as global warming, and the rapid extinction of thousands of other species due to our greed. Or take violence or war. Humanity is greedy – and this greed for "progress" at any cost might well push us into extinction if we do not act to save our planet. Now!
If saving the planet is a priority, then all aspects of our life must change. An example is a case of banning plastic. This is an extreme but important step towards planetary health. Plastic-related toxins are not just planet-unfriendly, they directly harm humans, by contributing to obesity, Diabetes and even cancer.
Food is a very important issue related to planetary health. Recently, the prestigious medical journal Called The Lancet suggested the need for a planetary diet. A healthy and natural strategy of eating might reduce the carbon footprint, preserve species diversity and reduce planetary damage.
And no, healthy eating is not about the exotic or expensive superfood. Locally available foods are often equally good or better than new fashion foods! The idea is to suggest that often, local foods anywhere are comparable to their global counterparts. We suggest that eating locally available and healthy food is the key to thinking globally for our Planet's health.
I recently watched a Netflix thriller called "The Haunting of Hill House". In one of the scenes, the character questions the word "supernatural". This word should not necessarily be synonymous with magic or fantasy. "Super Natural" could just as well mean a state that is closest to nature's ways.
As humans, could we become "Super Natural", in the ideal sense of the word? We hope that human beings learn to live in harmony with nature. This is the only way to save our planet, and we are sure that humanity is up to the task. We must and we will follow a lifestyle that is conducive for our well-being, and for the health of our planet.
And is it too much to hope that you, dear reader, will lead by example?
Happy leading and reading, dear super-beings!
Dr Unnikrishnan AG